More than one-million Americans suffer slip or fall injuries every year. More than 17,000 people die annually from slip and fall accidents, according to 2012 statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Slip and fall injuries constitute about 15 percent of all work-related injuries, and are the second most common cause of workplace fatalities.
Nearly 1,800 people die in the United States every year from falls and fall-related injuries in nursing homes alone.
Did Tripping, Slipping, and Falling on Someone Else’s Property Injure You?
If someone else’s negligence caused your fall, Indiana law entitles you to compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost income.
Although most of these injuries occur on business properties, such as at hotels or motels, grocery stores, amusement parks, or department stores, you may also bring a claim if you fell on private property at someone’s home or apartment.
Immediately seek medical attention for your injuries and take photographs of what caused your fall.
In this type of case, the property owner or insurer usually will try to blame you—or make you sign papers saying they will pay your medical bills if you release them from any liability for your pain and suffering and other damages.
Premises liability is the legal term for a claim where slipping, tripping, and falling on someone else’s property causes injuries. Generally speaking, both business owners and residence owners have a duty to keep their properties safe for visitors. These cases present special legal difficulties because you must prove either that the owners knew or should have known that the hazard existed before your injuries.
If you’re unsure about your case, a FREE consultation can provide you with peace of mind. I will personally ensure that you understand your rights, your options, and the legal consequences of your decisions before proceeding. I am firmly committed to obtaining the best possible settlement for you.
Injuries From Slip and Falls
Slip and fall accidents cause more serious injuries than you may imagine. Serious injuries that may result from a slip and fall include:
Neck and back injuries
What Caused Your Slip and Fall Accident?
Many factors can cause a person to slip and fall, including overworn and slippery shoes or poor balance. In other situations, though, people may fall due to no fault of their own. Instead, they slip and fall because of a hazard that existed at a store or business.
Stores have the legal duty to inspect their premises for dangerous conditions and to rectify those situations as soon as they can. If for some reason they cannot fix hazards in timely ways, stores have the duty to provide adequate warnings to customers about the potential injury risks so customers can use appropriate caution.
Unfortunately, stores often breach this duty and negligently allow hazardous conditions to persist, leading to slips, falls, and other accidents. Common causes of slips and falls include:
- Wet or slippery floors with no warning signs
- Worn out carpets or rugs
- Overly worn wood floors
- Items or trash left on the floor
- Ice or snow
If a business owner or management knew or should have known about any of the above hazards, those who slip and fall can hold the business owner or management responsible for their injuries.
Standing up for the Rights of Fall Victims
If you believe that your own clumsiness did not cause your slip and fall, discuss the circumstances of your injury with an experienced attorney who can identify any negligence on the part of a store or business. Merry Fountain has the resources to investigate the cause of your fall and advise you of any legal rights to compensation.
The next step in a slip and fall case is generally to calculate the value of your claim. You can seek different types of damages after a slip and fall, depending on the severity of your injuries, including;
- Costs of medical treatments, including emergency treatments, hospitalization, physical therapy, medication, surgery, and more
- Costs of future treatments required for your injuries
- Income you lost from missing work and that you will lose in the future if you are not ready to return to work or need to visit doctors or physical therapists
- Physical pain and suffering
- Injury related emotional trauma
- Lost enjoyment of life
- Permanent impairments or disabilities
Cases involving permanent injuries may involve complex calculations that reach into the hundreds of thousands of dollars due to lifelong harm and limitations caused by injuries. Other cases may only involve damages for emergency department bills, physical therapy, and a few days off work. No matter how much your claim is worth, however, seek compensation if someone else caused your injuries.
Businesses should carry liability insurance policies to cover the costs of any injuries that take place on their premises. This does not mean that such an insurance policy will automatically cover your fall-related losses, however, because all insurance companies will try to avoid liability whenever possible. You will need to prove the business was negligent and should therefore pay for your injuries and losses.
In addition to proving negligence, you will need to prove the damages that you seek. In some cases, insurance companies will admit liability on the part of a policyholder but will challenge the amount of your claim. An insurance company will commonly offer you a settlement for far less than the losses you suffered. Without proper legal representation, too many people believe that accepting this offer is their only option. By doing so, they miss out on substantial compensation that they truly deserve. Accepting payment also waives the right to take any further legal actions regarding your fall.
With the help of an experienced slip and fall attorney, you can rest assured that you will always know whether an insurance company offered you an adequate settlement. The Fountain Law Firm will negotiate with the insurer to try to obtain the full amount you need to cover your losses.
Personal Injury Claims
Sometimes, an insurance company will not offer acceptable compensation or a policy is too small to cover your losses. Attorney Merry Fountain can identify when to file a claim in civil court for personal injuries. Slip and fall claims come under the purview of premises liability law, which requires that you prove a negligent business or property owner failed to maintain a premises. As mentioned before, such negligence can include allowing many different hazards on a property and failing to warn about dangers.
You need a lawyer representing you who understands how to gather the necessary evidence of negligence and use it to build a strong case in your favor. You can then use such evidence in settlement negotiations to obtain a favorable offer from the defendant or to prove your claims at trial, if necessary. You want the assistance of an attorney who will explore every option to ensure you receive full compensation in your case.
Discuss Your Case With an Experienced Indianapolis Slip and Fall Lawyer TodayIf you sustained serious injuries in a slip and fall accident in or around Indianapolis, look no further than the Fountain Law Firm. Merry Fountain has protected the rights of many injured clients and brings the same commitment and determination to every case. Never take slip and fall accidents and injuries lightly. The law gives victims the right to seek payment for their many losses. Please do not hesitate to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case with an Indianapolis slip and fall attorney. Call (888) 242-HURT (4878) or contact the office online for help.